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 But...

No matter how much he'd valued him, Ofran had never thought that Mafa would be this formidable.

When Stan Watson died unexpectedly, Ofran had first thought that he had met some danger in the Aurij mountains, and he then thought that Mafa Merlin had spent money to hire a hitman. But he'd never ever considered the possibility that Mafa had personally done the act, let alone in such a simple and domineering way...

The Red Dragon Mercenary Group was stably within the top three mercenary groups of Okland, and the power of fifty of their elites gathered together was quite shocking, not to mention the beautiful Expert Swordswoman, Anna Achilles. Ofran had seen her more than once; how could the disciple of the Storm Sword Saint be weak?

And there was Stan Watson.

Ofran felt that even if he had personally made a move, he might not have been able to kill Stan Watson.

Yet, Link told him that such a powerful line-up was easily broken down by Mafa Merlin, that he was able to take Stan Watson's life in front of Anna Achilles and the others.

What kind of power was that?

Ofran didn't dare to keep thinking about it.

Mafa's strength far surpassed his own.

And this wasn't the most important part...

In the world of magic, one would carefully choose their inheritor. No matter how talented a mage was, they couldn't become a genius on their own. The more powerful a mage was, the more powerful and shocking their background would be.

It could be seen from Okland.

Jouyi, Harren, and others... Which of them didn't have a famous teacher giving them pointers, which of them didn't have a shocking background?

Ofran wouldn't think too much about it if Mafa Merlin were only an ordinary 1st Rank High Mage, but Mafa Merlin was far beyond that. What Link told him was enough to prove that Mafa Merlin had the power to kill an Archmage.

Killing an Archmage despite being a 1st Rank High Mage...

How could that person have been taught by an ordinary teacher?

How could he not have a shocking background?

Cold sweat trickled down Ofran's forehead.

'This is going to blow up! What should I do...'

Ofran's brain was working at full capacity. He wanted to stop the Elder Council, but there was one problem. How? If this continued and Mafa Merlin was infuriated by their antics, a conflict could hardly be prevented. If Mafa came out worse and suffered a loss, it might provoke his backer, and the Merlin Family might run out of luck.

He was someone that had the power to kill an Archmage as a High Mage... Who was his backer?

Jouyi or Harren?

If one of these two demons were triggered, the Merlin Family would definitely face an imminent disaster...

But...

"I have something to say!" As Ofran was crumbling under the pressure, someone interjected.

This would surely pour old on the fire...

Ofran then saw Leon slowly standing up...

'Shit!' Ofran cursed to himself, 'How come it's Leon!'

Others might not know...

But Ofran, who had been in contact with William, knew about it. Leon had gone to Thousand Sails City in order to recruit Mafa Merlin, but he had failed and ended up suffering a huge loss. He spent a few months in the Pale Plane after returning before finally being able to recover from that blow.

The relationship between the two of them wasn't good.

'Why are you standing up now! Shit, Leon, you little bastard, what the hell do you think you are doing?'

Ofran couldn't sit still.

The situation was bad enough to begin with, and if Leon tried anything to aggravate it, today might be the last day of the Elder Council. They would all suffer the consequences for their actions.

"Ha... Haha, it's you Leon, you... Let us hear what you want to say..." But as the Patriarch of the Merlin Family, Ofran could only follow the procedures with a smile on his face. But his eyes were staring fixedly at Leon when he prompted him to continue. Even a fool would know that he was trying to say, 'Bastard, don't fucking talk!'

"Yes, I have something to share..." Ofran hadn't expected Leon to keep going despite his stare.

Leon was terrified right now and want to quickly get it off his chest.

If he could, he wouldn't stand up right now.

But that pig-like teammate...

Leon's original plan was to remain careful and not say anything in this meeting. No matter what the other Elders did or said to Mafa Merlin, in the end, the ones who would suffer would be them. All he needed to do was make himself as invisible as possible, and make it so that Mafa Merlin didn't even pay attention to him. He only had to survive this meeting...

But his plan was shattered by the other Elder that supposedly supported him.

Leon wanted to curse as he thought of this. After obtaining a seat at the Elder Council, he'd felt that he should be more vocal in order to become more noticeable, which would give him an advantage in the future competition over the patriarch position.

Thus, when that terrible teammate expressed the wish to join his faction, he didn't hesitate to accept him.

To be fair, that Elder did help him many times over the years, and although he didn't give him any tangible benefits, he allowed him to not have to fight alone in the Elder Council. When needed, he was someone he could discuss with...

But...

Today...

With only a few sentences, that man had destroyed all the goodwill he had accumulated over the years!

'Is Mafa Merlin someone you can offend? Star Sage Jouyi stands behind him! You won't even know how you died if Star Sage Jouyi is unhappy with you!

'You don't know shit, yet you dare to openly support Logan's proposition. Logan's side is courting death, are you ready to die with them?

'You give me no choice but to personally stand up to wipe your ass! You are really incapable, yet you are very good at causing disasters...'

"I believe everyone in the conference hall knows that I went to Thousand Sails City a few months ago. To tell the truth, it wasn't a pleasant experience..."

"..." Ofran felt like weeping as he heard him. 'That's right, we know you got sorted out by Mafa in Thousand Sails City, you resent him deeply... But please, Leon, don't say anymore, okay?'

But Leon continued talking...

"I also got the opportunity to get close to the Gilded Rose back then. No one here can imagine how shocking the Gilded Rose is. It could be said that the Gilded Rose rules over Thousand Sails City. All the magic materials are flowing towards it before coming out as magic items that are then distributed to every major force..."

"..." Ofran was already rolling his eyes. 'You are courting death, you'll die...'

"Then, I excitedly entered the Gilded Rose and saw Cousin William. We chatted for an entire two hours. Cousin William was the one talking most of the time, and he told me how Cousin Mafa built the Gilded Rose from the ruins of the old Gilded Rose all on his own, how it had a monopoly over the alchemy market, how it became Thousand Sails City's true ruler...

"It sounded like fantasy at the time, I simply couldn't believe it. How could such a young mage achieve all this? I was just like you are now, unaware how of outstanding Cousin Mafa was. You are now trying to take away the Gilded Rose from such a genius. This is truly ridiculous! Do you even know how the Gilded Rose is operating?

"That's why I'm opposing Elder Logan's suggestion!"

'You are courting death, you are courting death, you are...' Ofran's thoughts had been repeating like a broken record, but then he heard Leon voicing his opposition to the decision of the rest of the Elders...

'He's opposing?'

Ofran almost stood up on the spot...

'Why is he opposing? Did something happen to him?'

Ofran wasn't the only one who was startled...

Leon's declaration was like a bomb exploding in the conference hall, shocking all the other Elders.

'How could it be!'

'Is Leon crazy!?'

'Why is he opposing the decision!'

'Doesn't he know that this is a meat pie falling from the sky for the entire Merlin Family, for all the Elders? That is incredible wealth ripe for the taking. Is he sick?'

"Leon Merlin." As his rival for the patriarch's seat, Aube didn't fail to live up to everyone's expectations. He stood up and said, "Please understand, we are worried about Mafa Merlin's abilities. You should be well aware that he doesn't have the ability to protect the Gilded Rose. Instead of having it taken away by others, it would be better for the Elder Council to manage it..."

"Hahaha, Aube, you mean to say that you can protect the Gilded Rose?"

"Leon, stop causing trouble!" Aube suddenly got mad. "Once Mafa hands over the Gilded Rose, the whole Elder Council would be managing it, including you, Leon!"

"I don't have the ability..." A sneer appeared on Leon's face. "In fact, no one here has the ability..."

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